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Digital Dark--the Human Element

In an ancient monastery, a new monk arrived to dedicate his life and
to join the others copying ancient records.  The first thing he noticed
that they were copying, by hand, books that had already been copied -- by
hand. He had to speak up, "Forgive me, Father Justinian, but copying
copies by hand allows many chances for error.  How do we know that we
copying someone else's mistakes?  Are they ever checked against the

Father Justinian was startled! No one had ever suggested that before.
that is a good point, my son.  I will take one of these latest books down
the vault and study it against its original document."

He went deep into the vault where no one else was allowed to enter, and
started to study.  The day passed and it was getting late in the evening.
monks were getting worried about Father Justinian.  Finally one monk
making his way through the old vault, and as he began to think he might
lost, he heard sobbing.  So he called out, "Father Justinian?"  The
grew louder as he came near.

He finally found the old priest sitting at a table with both the new copy
the original ancient book in front of him.  It was obvious that Father
Justinian had been crying for a long time.  "Oh, my Lord," sobbed Father
Justinian, "the word is 'celebrate'!!"

Sam Lanham (slanham@hctc.net)

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